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Every facility manager knows that he or she could be held at least partially responsible for periods of reduced productivity and increased downtime. But what happens when a critical high pressure pump doesn’t meet performance expectations? Leveraging the skills and expertise of the Crane Engineering team, one manufacturer solved this problem.
A food manufacturing plant in southern Wisconsin specializing in the production and packaging of carrots, corn, mixed vegetables, peas, potatoes, and stew vegetables installed high pressure pumps to supply water to the plant for clean up after a long day of production. The main purpose of these pumps was to supply enough flow and pressure to hoses placed around the plant for cleaning and pressure washing work areas. After these pumps were installed, they still weren’t seeing enough flow and pressure to all of the nozzles and hoses placed throughout the plant. This was a problem that needed to be addressed.
The company was running three (3) Roto-Jet high pressure pumps in parallel to supply flow and pressure to the plant. Many food manufacturing plants, including this one, use fixed flow orifices on the discharge of the pump to protect it from running off the curve and destroying the pump, which could be detrimental in terms of maintenance costs and unscheduled downtime for the company.
Using the fixed flow orifice on the discharge of the pump causes a significant amount of wasted energy and places limitations on the capacity and production of the pump.
In coordination with the facility’s maintenance department, it was decided to provide a long-term, more substantial solution by removing the orifices and sticking with the standard size discharge. The team at Crane Engineering then sized, selected, and installed a pressure regulating valve in the discharge of the pump with a controller to regulate the valve. This allowed for full control of the high pressure pumps, while increasing flow rate and discharge pressure throughout the plant. Problem solved!
Using the pressure regulator and controller setup versus the flow orifice helped to increase productivity, and also ensured consistency across the board for higher flow rates and pressure for which the pump was initially designed.